Upgrading to Oceans from Near Coastal


I had a nice long conversation today with my evaluate in WV about adding my MASTER STCW to my license, got all that sorted out. The last question I had for her was how to add ocean to my 100 ton license.

She pointed me to http://www.dco.uscg.mil/Portals/9/NMC/pdfs/examinations/deck_engineering_guide_as_of_3_24_14.pdf

and said all I needed to do was the last two training modules on page 17, just go to regional exam center and test.

Navigation and Deck General/Safety

Navigation Problems: Oceans

So in my search, i have found a few things on Q156 but nothing on Q157

are there classes I could take at a school for these 2 items?



Unless I’m mistaken, it isn’t possible to add OCEAN to a 100 GRT license unless it is really a 200 GRT license that was limited to 100 GRT due to sea service tonnage. The 100 GRT license and 200 GRT licenses are two separate beasts, and the modules you’ve quoted are what is required to upgrade from a 100 GRT NC to 200 GRT OC. But again, if you don’t meet the tonnage requirements, they’ll issue you a 200 GRT license limited to only 50 or 100 GRT.


Ask the evaluator to send you an approval to test letter for Oceans.

Many schools offer a two to four week course that covers Celestial or Oceans. You take the exam at the school.

You may have to take that Nav/Deck exam at the USCG. You can learn the material with software.


I don’t believe you can remove a near costal restriction from a 100 GRT license.


When you say an approval to test letter what do you mean? Somethingnfromnthe coast guard?


You can have an oceans endorsement on a 100 ton, but I think that you have to take the 200 ton upgrade class? That’s what I am trying to figure out what those 2 modules in the original post translate to at the schools


Yes, I think you are correct, test for 200 ton, limited by tonnage to 100…, I’m just trying to translate those 2 modules listed above into classes at a school, where I could test at the school.


This 100 ton Oceans issue was discussed awhile ago. Use the search function to read it.

What the NMC evaluator says is meaningless. The only thing that counts is the approval letter. It’s the official USCG statement of what you are approved for, and what modules you must take. The NMC evaluators make a lot of mistakes, some get corrected by supervisors, some don’t. Until you have the approval to test in your hand, you don’t have anything. Also, you have to take letter with you to the exam or they won’t let you in.


They’re not classes, they’re tests you have to take at the NMC. But as the others said, apply for the upgrade, and whatever your Approval to test letter, that they send you is what you have to take. Look at the checklists on the NMC website to see all the requirements for what license you want.


The evaluator is correct. The Q156 is required to upgrade to a 200 GRT Master License, which may be limited to 100 GRT depending on your sea time. The Q157 module is just a celestial navigation exam to get the oceans route. You must test for 200 GRT to get Oceans, even if your restricted to 100 GRT, or even 50 GRT. See 46 CFR 11.422 https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/46/11.422


I’m also working on the same upgrade at the moment. I already have received my approval to test letter with Q156/Q157 required. Although my evaluator specified the new modules from the 2014 Deck and Engineering Guide, I’m also eligible to test under the old Deck and Engineering Guide due to the start of my sea service. But looking at the 2011 guide, I think it requires Q100 RoR, 011X3 Deck General, 073XX chart Plot, 078XX Nav Oceans.
I asked my evaluator whether or not there was any advantage to testing with the old modules rather than the new, but she had no idea. Just based on the number of modules required for the upgrade, I’m thinking that the new modules (Q1156/Q157) are the obvious choice. But I’m looking for confirmation.


The new rules added Mercator Sailing, Great Circle Sailing, and Latitude by Polaris, and changed azimuths and amplitudes from just the sun, to any body.

You can check your self by comparing the subjects under 46 CFR 11.910 in the current rule to the subjects in the CFR in 2013.